There was a time when the only place you could find Black Angus beef on a menu was at some of the nation’s finest steakhouses. But these days, Angus burgers are served at McDonald’s, Back Yard Burgers, Carl’s Jr., Hardee’s, and Smashburger and are just one of many fine-dining menu items, ingredients, and techniques that were adopted by quick-service and fast-casual restaurants over the last decade.
Back Yard Burgers
In the teeth of the recession, Back Yard Burgers developed a new, slimmed-down marketing strategy. The roughly 200-unit, Nashville, Tennessee–based chain cut costs across the board, developed a slick-looking website, and created a social media strategy centered on Facebook and Twitter.
But Ken King, a senior consultant with National Restaurant Consultants Inc., says this was a disaster.
“Their same-store sales in some stores are down as much as 20 or 30 percent,” King says. “They’re just not reaching the public at all.”
The wedding dinner was prepped for the oncoming slew of guests: Stainless steel chafing dishes lined the buffet tables, silverware sat wrapped in cloth napkins and silver rings, and servers stood at the ready in black slacks and white dress shirts.
It was a fine feast to celebrate the sharing of vows, but there was a twist: The dinner was catered and staffed by Dickey’s Barbecue Pit.